Leonard Kress

Leonard Kress has recent work (poetry and fiction) in Barn Owl Review, Passages North, Harvard Review, New Orleans Review, River Styx, and Atticus Review.  Most recent poetry collections are Braids & Other Sestinas, The Orpheus Complex, and Living in the Candy Store.  He currently teaches philosophy, religion, and creative writing at Owens College in Ohio.

Work by Leonard Kress

Leonard Kress

Blood Thinners

My father is dying, but I’m the only one who seems to know it. He’s in the hospital and they’ve moved him from Intensive Care to Cardiac Step-down to a regular ward. His roommate is recovering from gall bladder surgery and his whole extended family surrounds him with warmth and cheer. My father doesn’t speak more than grunts. He can’t move himself other than to paw ferociously at the tubes running into his chest and the IVs in his wrist, the feeding tube threaded through his nostril. His catheter and the stoma for his colostomy bag. My brother thinks he’s on ...

Read More

Leonard Kress

Ascent to the Underworld

In Centralia, in the Poconos of Northeastern Pennsylvania, there’s no need to descend into the underworld, the realm of the dead, the realm of prophecy and hidden insight. Here, on what used to be a street lined with white aluminum-sided homes, edged lawns and wading pools, well-tuned and tended pickups—the underworld seeps up out of the ground, rising swirling and sulfurous from barely visible slits and fissures in the earth. The topsy-turvy displacement is almost complete. Charred roots tendril out from the ash and slag and gravel mounds that haven’t yet spilled into the hot depressions. The mammoth anthracite coal ...

Read More

Leonard Kress

Dandelions

Lion’s Teeth, I say, but she doesn’t even blink. I don’t know what they’re called in German, whether or not they even proliferate along the Baltic Coast where she grew up. Dandy Lines, Lion’s Teeth, the signifier becomes increasingly slurred...

Read More

From the Archives